This young Great Horned Owl’s story closely mimics that of a juvenile Red-tailed Hawk (#11-1127) that is currently in our care. The owl was found on the ground in Ferndale, WA and he was weak and lethargic. The bird spent two days in care at the Northwest Wildlife Rehabilitation Center in Bellingham before being transferred to PAWS on June 4.
Blood work that was performed during the owl’s intake examination showed that he was anemic and suffering from the blood parasite Leukocytozoan. Subsequent diagnostics also found that he was fighting an intestinal parasite. With a little time and supportive care, he has shown marked improvement. He is now bright, alert and feisty. As the photos show he has begun mantling (assuming a defensive posture) when we enter his cage. He also clacks his beak in a warning to stay away.
The Great Horned Owl will be in our care for several more weeks as he grows into a strong, capable sub-adult bird. If all goes well he will be returning to the wild near Ferndale later on this summer.